posted on: Nov 28, 2012
Advent has always been one of my favorite seasons of the year. I love the Christmas music, decorating the house, the colored lights, and the delicious food. I remember so clearly being a child and hardly being able to sleep the night before the big day. One year, I received a stuffed dog with puppies that had been in all the commercials. I threw the box up in the air, watching it tumble over and over.
I also remember a lot of guilt at Christmas. I knew that the season was about Jesus, but I just wanted toys, toys, and more toys. I wanted at least as much as, if not more than, my siblings. I felt bored as my dad read the Christmas story. “When can we get this over with so I can open up my presents?” I would wonder. I felt waves of envy and frustration as my friends shared their Christmas haul with me.
What a conflicting time of the year for me! I think I loved the season (and Jesus) enough that I didn’t want to spend every Christmas this way. I prayed and prayed about it. And God in His grace and mercy changed my heart so that Christmas became about worshipping Him instead of material things.
That is my hope and prayer for your families and your children this season. I pray that it is a time of hope, love, joy, and peace, but most of all, that it’s a time of worshipping our Savior. I hope that through using these advent devotions, the glory and worth of Jesus shines so brightly it eclipses the stress and consumerism of Christmas. I pray that your children recognize that Jesus gave Himself, a gift greater than anything we will receive for any Christmas, ever.
These devotions are designed to point to Jesus and lead us to worship. Advent is a season of anticipation; the word means “coming” or “arrival.” This advent season we celebrate the coming of Jesus Christ to the earth. He is Emmanuel, God with us. We also celebrate that because of Jesus’ birth, life, death, and resurrection we are made right with God, and through the Holy Spirit we continually experience God’s presence. Finally, we celebrate that this isn’t the end of the story. Someday, Jesus will return and everythingwill be made right: “And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, ‘Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away’” (Revelation 21:3-4).
Download a PDF of Advent Devotions here
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